So, you’re moving from being the class clown and the funny guy in your group of friends to embarking on the road to becoming a stand up comedian. You find making people laugh and being funny comes natural to you, so it’s going to be easy taking that to the next level right? Well standing on stage and making an audience of strangers laugh is not as easy as the professionals make it look. For a start, before you even consider taking to the stage, you should have practiced and practiced some more, learning from your mistakes and gradually your performance will appear more natural and comfortable. As a newbie, these are some tips you may find useful:
- You cannot rely on good material to achieve a good response from your audience. Even the best, most hilarious material can be ruined by poor delivery. Equally, sometimes a relatively poor joke can be delivered in such a way that still has the audience in uproar.
- Look carefully at your body language. If physical humor comes naturally to you, incorporate this into your routine. Are you comfortable moving about the stage, engaging the audience, attracting their attention with your movement around the stage. Unless you are deliberately adopting a deadpan style, incorporate variations in your voice and facial expressions to emphasise key parts of your routine.
- You may have found you could make friends and family laugh with off the cuff humor and observations. However, as a stand up, you should avoid thinking you can go on stage and ‘wing’ it. You should have a well rehearsed routine that you can go on stage and perform with little or no requirement for ad libbing. As you become a more seasoned performer, you may start to develop a confidence which allows you to switch about your routine a little to suit the audience, but particularly as you first start out, stick to a well rehearsed act that you have confidence in.
- Use material that is based on your own experiences or interests. It is easier to write about subjects you know and the audience can sense if you are insincere and write about topics you know little about or have no interest in. No matter what your lifestyles or interests, there should be plenty of topics to use as a source for your routine.